Armstrong William Arthur, a 72-year-old assembly member of Esshiam-Ntaama in the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolis who deals in fake electricity meters has been arrested after he ignorantly sold them to police officers who posed as civilian buyers.
His arrest led to the arrest of his accomplice, a 60-year-old man named Philip Eshun, in Kojokrom.
Western Regional Public Relations Officer of the Electricity Company of Ghana, Benjamin Quarcoo disclosed that his outfit got a tipoff about the suspect’s illegal activities and decided to team up with the police to investigate him.
The joint team went undercover and pretended to be desperate civilians who needed ECG meters badly, and he sold the fate items to them without knowing his cup was full.
“William Arthur’s criminal activities came to light after a tip-off by a customer in Sekondi. We then placed a phone call to him and pretended to be interested in the metres that he sells. With the help of the Police, we were able to arrest him. He also mentioned Philip Eshun as his source. When we went to Eshun’s house, we found that he had installed three of the fake metres. We therefore arrested him as well. They are currently in the custody of the Sekondi Police, who are conducting further investigations into the matter,” Citinewsroom.com quotes Quarcoo as saying.
He commended informants who assisted the ECG and the police in arresting the suspects, adding it was just the beginning of a fierce war on criminals who are impeding the work of the electricity power provider.
“We applaud the informant and other customers for being good citizens and assisting us in arresting such persons who steal our conductors and other materials that we use for our work. We assure the criminals that we will not stop pursuing them until we are sure that there is none left in the system,” he added.
Samuel Dubik Mahama, the Managing Director of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), records a loss of GH¢25 million whenever it rains.
“Before the rainy season set in, ECG was averaging between GH¢40 to GH¢50 million a day. Now any day that you see rain, note that we’re down by GH¢25 million.
“We plan all-year round with the same tariff. In certain parts of the world, the tariff is not flat. When it’s cold, it varies from when it is hot and they find a way to balance it out. But we have a tariff that runs all year without considering the down periods.
“So clearly consumption will be less during these periods and definitely revenue collected will not be adequate enough to cover the shortfalls,” Dubik Mahama said.
The ECG is struggling to control illegal connections and fake meter sales among other things that have plunged it into debts to independent power producers, with some of them threatening to shut down their plants sometimes.